Economy set for its biggest decline in recent history; Does Cuenca need more taxis? Beach reopenings are up to local COEs; Nature corridor
Hola, Todos –
De la pagina cultural –
Conversatorio – UDA and the Asociación Ecuatoriana de Ciencia Política have organized a talk on democracy and post-politics el viernes on Zoom. Enter with the ID: 969 8135 3719.
Webinar on violence – The U. Católica de Cuenca will have a webinar el 13/8 a las 15:00 on viral violence <Is that what all the name calling and insulting on-line is called?> with professionals from Spain and Ecuador. Register at https://forms.gle/KsmQyNLFFyVHnc1B9.
Otras cosas –
Titular – 550 casos de violencia a las mujeres (550 cases of violence against women) – A movement on social networks called ‘Yo sí te creo’ (I do believe you) was the trigger for a series of testimonies and reports from Cuencanas who were victims of violence, but had kept it secret for fear of being judged. As of yesterday there were 550 distinct messages which were tabulated by victim support collectives. Constanza Júaregui, a member of ‘Las hijas de Pandora’ collective said that psychologists, attorneys, and social workers have volunteered to help these women.
According to the UN, 8 out of 10 women in Cuenca have been victims of violence at some time in their lives, exceeding the national statistic of 7 out of 10. ECU-911 reported 943 cases of intrafamiliar violence since the start of the health emergency, with 205 physical attacks that resulted in injuries. Aggressors are not strangers to the victims with 52% of the cases involving the womens’ partners and 28% within the family circle.
Covid statistics – Cuenca has surpassed 3,000 cases with 3,020 registered since the beginning of the pandemic and about 1,000 active patients. Cuenca is the city with the 4th most cases after Quito with 13,651, Guayaquil with 12,039 and Santo Domingo de los Tsáchilas with 3,106. There have been 152 deaths in hospitals with 330 calls to ECU-911 to remove bodies which includes traffic and violent deaths as well as deaths from Covid. The situation in the hospitals has gotten worse with 69 critical Covid patients and only 61 ICU beds. The 8 patients will be treated on an outpatient basis or transferred to Cañar Province.
Economy – The pandemic has left severe effects on the nation’s economy according to the last information from the Banco Central del Ecuador (BCE). Losses between marzo y mayo, forewarn that the Producto Interno Bruto (PIB – GNP) will fall by 7.3% to 9.6%, the worst since 1927. BCE data showed the economy fell 4.2% in 1933 during the Depression, 4.7% during the 1999 banking crisis, and 1.2% after the earthquake in Manabí y Esmeraldas. Just since mayo of this year, the economy has fallen 3.8%. Imports fell by 16.1% and exports by 5.2% where in 2019 exports grew by 5.22%. <If you’re interested, the rest of the article, titled “La pandemia dio duro golpe a la economia,” has a lot more statistics on economics by sectors, employment, etc.>
College exams – 185,201 students have signed up for the admission exams to go to universities and technological institutes. As of now, no one knows how many places there will be for them. But an increase is foreseen since some universities are preparing classes on line. The test has 80 questions on math, natural sciences, social sciences and language. <I wonder how many of us could score well enough to get into an Ecuadorian university. I know , I know – you used to know all the answers, but you’ve forgotten them in the last 40 years.>
More taxis – There will be 50 more taxis in Cuenca if the Corte Provincial de Justicia del Azuay ratifies the decision of the Tribunal de Garantías Penales which accepted the acción de protección (protection action) filed by the Transaymarín S.A. company. The Tribunal ordered the Municipalidad de Cuenca to process the operating permits for Transaymirín S.A. The resolution is being appealed by the municipality which considers that the 3,412 taxis currently circulating is enough. <Except at rush hours on rainy days.>
Natural corridor – The natural corridor that connects the Sangay and Podocarpus national parks contains about 567,000 hectares where 40% of the birds in Ecuador live as well as hundreds of species of plants and other animals. The corridor passes through the 5 southern provinces of Azuay, Cañar, Loja, Morona Santiago y Zamora Chinchipe. It was created to avoid the fragmentation of ecological systems and habitat. The Ministerio del Ambiente y Agua (MAE) is working on creating a northern corridor that will unite Yántate-Sangay, and extending the southern corridor to Perú.
Beach reopenings – Although the Gobierno authorized the reopening of 40 beaches in 5 provinces as of Wednesday, the final decision is up to each COE cantonal. Some mayors have decided not to reopen beaches including Cinthya Viteri of Guayaquil who has also prohibited social gatherings, Agustín Intriago of Manta, y Lucía Sosa of Esmeraldas. Juan Zapata, director of the ECU 911 Sistema de Seguridad said that they will use the Distancia2 application and more controls at the beaches. This will include uniformed officers and drones, and hours will be from 10-17:00. The rules include 2 meter distancing between individuals and/or family groups. Umbrellas must be 3 m. apart and tents for more than 6 people are prohibited. The minister of tourism reported the national COE approved 19 bio-security protocols to be used in lodgings and tourist facilities. Hotel occupancy can be up to 100% with all hotel facilties open. <So for you risk takers, the beach is open.>
And that’s all for today so Hasta ? –